The Georgia Virtue Business Spotlight Series features local businesses that function as the backbone of our communities. The series is sponsored by Bulloch Solutions.
Beekeeping for the Kimbrells started out as a hobby that was supposed to help facilitate the garden in their backyard. Now it’s a booming business that had them sold out in year one and acquiring local apiaries and traveling outside the state in year two.
Two years ago, Jennifer and Curtis Kimbrell planted a garden and thought it would be a good idea to have bees to pollinate the plants and crops. A family friend, who kept bees, happened to have a large garden and needed help by way of a tractor. A little bartering and some swapping of knowledge had the Kimbrells with their first hive. They enjoyed having the bees and it wasn’t long after that the friend offered up all of his hives due to his being transferred out of state for work. The one hive turned to ten, then twenty, and quickly 85 after another apiary was acquired in Richmond Hill and soon they began fielding requests to deliver the bees out of state to help other farmers and growers with their crops.
The abundance of bees, honey, and need within the beekeeping community all helped pollinate what is now known as Humble Bumble Bee Farm.
Jennifer and Curtis are each fascinated by different intricacies of beekeeping – whether it’s the meticulousness of timing and placement of bee boxes or the familial and community structure of bees within their hive or the simple but perfect way bees produce and cap the honey for collection. Both spend an abundance of time watching videos, reading, and learning from others in the beekeeping community.
When it’s time to suit up, Curtis does most of the beekeeping management, but they extract the honey together and Jennifer coordinates the packaging and delivery.
Humble Bumble honey is unique because it is not processed with any heat. They use one straining cloth to clean out any large wax, but pollen, microbits of wax, and all of the tremendous health benefits you find in honey remains. All of the honey distributed locally is from bees kept in Bulloch County or very close to Bulloch County. The Kimbrells look for plant resources and the honey flow opportunity before they place a bee box outside one of their current locations.
As for traveling with hives, they currently have relationships with growers as far north as North Carolina where they help pollinate for sourwood honey and as far south as Florida to help with orange trees and blueberries. Bees have to travel at night and they go by trailer for their safety. The pollination quickly became a secondary part of the business, but the main focus is still the local honey distribution.
“We just really want to provide it to anyone who wants it. This whole thing has been a really big blessing and we enjoy it,” Jennifer said.
Honey doesn’t expire, so you can stock up on as much as you’d like. Locally, Humble Bumble Bee Farm can be purchased online at the Market2Go site for the Statesboro Market, the local shop inside the Statesboro Visitors and Convention Bureau, Cool Beanz Espresso (which also uses the honey in their teas and coffees!), Hot Vintage Market in Statesboro, and Ogeechee Steamers on Highway 301. On occasion, you can also catch them at the Farmer’s Market in downtown Statesboro.
If you’re looking for the personal touch, Humble Bumble Bee Farm offers complimentary local delivery. Here’s how you can reach them: